Synthetic Organic Compounds (SOCs) are man-made organic compounds that are less volatile, i.e., less likely to escape into the atmosphere, when compared to the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and other organic compounds that are normally not present in drinking water naturally. Most of the SOCs are represented by a combination of Herbicides, Insecticides, Pesticides and/or Fungicides that can be commonly found in agricultural areas, urban settings, and industrial runoff or associated with runoff and wastewater discharges from domestic wastewater treatment facilities and non-point-source pollution.
In general, Synthetic Organic Compounds (SOCs) tend to create both acute and chronic health effects and tend to damage the nervous system, kidneys; they may also pose a potential cancer risk. Normally, these compounds do not cause aesthetic problems at levels that are below the level that may pose a health concern or hazard. For many synthetic organics there are no specific drinking water standards, but there are health advisories.